North Korea Unveils Romantic Exhibit Honoring Kim Jong Un on Anniversary
Celebrity News North Korea

North Korea Unveils Romantic Exhibit Honoring Kim Jong Un on Anniversary


In a significant move to bolster the “cult of personality” surrounding North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un, a remarkable art exhibit has been unveiled, showcasing the first-ever paintings of the country’s enigmatic leader. The exhibit, which forms part of the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the “victory in the Fatherland Liberation War,” portrays a series of outlandish and idealized scenes, depicting Kim Jong Un engaging in various activities, from mingling with farmers to riding a horse atop Mount Paektu, the highest peak in North Korea.

The event drew the attention of hundreds of attendees, as the paintings featured not only Kim Jong Un but also his predecessors, Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. Interestingly, the positioning of Kim Jong Un’s painting has raised eyebrows, deviating from the tradition where it used to be placed third in a sequence after the depictions of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. This strategic shift potentially signals a change in the regime’s propaganda policy.

Describing the paintings as a portrayal of North Korea’s victories over imperialism and the United States, the state-owned Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) sought to emphasize the country’s long-standing history of resistance and triumph.

North Korea’s inception after World War II and Japan’s surrender in 1945 led to the division of the Korean Peninsula at the 38th parallel. The demarcation ultimately gave rise to North and South Korea in 1948, with the demilitarized zone (DMZ) being established in 1953 after the Korean War concluded with the signing of the Korean Armistice Agreement.

The paintings also serve to highlight the “immortal revolutionary history” of Kim Jong Il, who fervently upheld the legacy of wartime triumphs, alongside depictions of the current leader, Kim Jong Un, often referred to as “the illustrious commander.” The artwork also aims to present a narrative of positive change under the guidance of the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea, despite the harsh realities of border closures and famine brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Notably, the dire situation has reached a point where suicide rates have increased across the country, prompting Kim Jong Un to denounce suicide as an “act of treason against socialism.”

The official opening ceremony of the exhibit saw the presence of high-ranking officials, including Choe Chang Hak, vice department director of the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea, and Choe Hui Thae, chairman of the Pyongyang Municipal People’s Committee, along with representatives from various ministries and national institutions, as well as creators in the field of fine art.

The identity of the artist or artists responsible for the paintings remains shrouded in secrecy, reflecting the opaqueness of Kim Jong Un’s personal court. Prior to this exhibit, strict restrictions had prohibited artists from portraying Kim Jong Un, but recent developments indicate a shift in this policy, with the leader reportedly commissioning three mosaic murals of himself for public display.

Kim Jong Un’s decision to showcase multiple public works featuring himself aligns with the patterns established by his father and grandfather during the early years of their reigns. While statues of Kim Jong Un have yet to be observed, the display of portraits and paintings further solidifies the regime’s emphasis on the “cult of personality.”

In addition to the portraits of Kim Jong Un, the exhibit also features depictions of recent missile tests, including the Hwasong-18 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), and a military parade that took place in February. These additions underscore North Korea’s continued emphasis on showcasing its military might to the world.

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